New arthritis drug free via Medicare

WASHINGTON - A new drug for rheumatoid arthritis is now available for free to Medicare-enrolled senior citizens who lack prescription drug coverage.

Abbott Laboratories launched the program yesterday for its drug Humira, which was approved by the Food and Drug Administration last month.

Under the program, Medicare beneficiaries without drug coverage can receive Humira at no cost until a Medicare drug benefit is approved by Congress, which is expected to debate the issue this session.

Humira blocks a protein called tumor necrosis factor that is responsible for much of the pain and inflammation of arthritis. Seniors can get more information by calling (866) 4-HUMIRA.

Provided by ArmMed Media
Revision date: June 20, 2011
Last revised: by David A. Scott, M.D.